first of all I consider myself as a newbie.
I got my first six chickens (3 black sex links and 3 New Hampshire Red) in the spring of '2011. This spring one of my NHR decided to go broody (I thought uh oh??). Not having a rooster I searched around the area for some fertilized eggs. Finally found some Islandic chicken eggs in the area so I bought six. On July 10th the first an only chick hatched. The rest of the eggs were rotten, I did find a couple that looked like the embryo started to develop then stopped,
I built a separated box for the hen to brood in and she has been in there since I placed the eggs under her. I noticed that she has been going further and further away from the chick (now 5 weeks old), but as soon as she hears the chick cry out, momma comes a running. They have both been free ranging with the rest of the flock since the chick was 3-4 days old.
I also bought 25 roo's but only have 7 left due to a raccoon attack (killed 15) and lost 2 more just last week to what I think was a fox ( the 2 dominate roosters were missing). Only saw a mess of feathers and then the next morning found one of the roosters in my garage under a trailer. The roosters still running away when the hens come near them. They are 15 weeks old now, wondering when they will start getting brave enough to start mounting the hens. Just an FYI, I am planning on butchering all but two of them, as well as getting more hens. One of the roosters I will be keeping is a Polish Crested and is still healing from the raccoon attack. "Special" is what my sister named him and he is really picked on by the rest of the flock. So much so, that I only let him out with them when I am there. He thinks I am his mother, and will go between my legs when the other chickens come by.
Anyway I am curious as too when my NHR will start laying again and when or if I should put her and the baby in with the other hens? Any suggestions?